The European Commission recently published a memo stating they want to extend the use of cloud computing in Europe to allow Europe to improve its productivity levels and remain competitive globally. The European Commission believe that unclear or pro-supplier cloud computing contracts are one barrier to such extension happening. As such, an expert group has been set up by the European Commission to work on safe and fair model terms for cloud computing contracts.
It is refreshing for SMEs in the South-West that the European Commission acknowledges that:
Hopefully the challenges of the European Commission’s ambitious approach to establish a fully functioning internal market for cloud computing will be overcome.
If agreed and implemented, safe and fair model terms and transparent standards would be a big step forward. It would allow SMEs to build on the opportunities that will be or have been given by the recent superfast broadband projects in the UK (for example, http://www.michelmores.com/michelmores-advises-on-94m-superfast-broadban… regarding Devon and Somerset).
Over the past 15 months, the European Commission has viewed the public sector as a possible catalyst for driving the wider adoption of cloud services in the EU. The public sector is the largest IT procurer in Europe. But the public sector has not embraced cloud computing as widely as the private sector:
Model terms and certification schemes regarding IT security standards are some of the ways the European Commission proposes to overcome such barriers.
The European Commission is supporting the Cloud-for-Europe initiative. This aims to allow the public sector to prepare for the procurement of cloud services, maximising benefits and competition, minimising pitfalls.
Nathaniel Lane is a Solicitor in Michelmores’ Technology, Media and Communications Team who has an ISEB Certificate in Data Protection. For further information on this matter or data protection generally, please contact Nathaniel at firstname.lastname@example.org or on 0207 788 6313